DC vs Marvel Transportation

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  • 8/3/2019 DC vs Marvel Transportation


    DC vs. Marvel: Transportation


    The most important category of objects in the comic book universe of DC and Marvel has to

    be the weapons. I look at this topic at: http://foxhugh.wordpress.com/2010/04/06/marvel-vs-dc-weapons/

    I would argue that the second most important category of objects in the DC and Marvel

    comic book universe are objects of transportation. Superheroes fight supervillains and

    weapons are needed to do this. Unfortunately for superheroes, supervillains are often a

    cowardly lot that will flee with the loot rather than fight. Some warrior supervillains like

    Doomsday will stand and fight Superman but many supervillains try to flee Superman. This

    means the superhero needs a speedy mode of transport to catch the supervillain and the

    supervillain wants a mode of speedy transportation to escape. Plus when a crime occurs, the

    superhero needs to show up at the scene of the crime in the first place. Last but not least,

    most superheroes patrol anything from a sector of a galaxy, Green Lanterns, to a section ofcity, Daredevil and Hells Kitchen, and need a way of getting around.

    In other science fiction universe there is a vehicle category but comic books are more

    speculative fiction than science fiction and some of the most iconic and important forms of

    transport only vaguely fit even the most general definition of vehicle. This post will look at

    vehicles but also discuss other objects that provide transportation. Does DC or Marvel have

    the coolest objects of transportation?

    DC Transportation

    Below is a list of objects of transportation in the DC universe.

    1. Adam Stranges Jetpack

    2. Alpha Centurions Pax Romana

    3. Ambush Bugs Teleport Suit

    4. Batboat

    5. Batcycle

    6. Batmobile

    7. Batplane

    8. Birds of Prey Aerie One

    9. Birds of Prey Aerie Two

    10. Black Mantas Sea Saucer11. Black Mantas Walker

    12. Blackhawk Planes

    13. Blue Beetles Bug

    14. Blue Tracer

    15. Boom Tube

    16. Booster Mobile

    17. Brains Submarine

    18. Braniacs Skull Ship

    19. Braniacs Star Ship

    20. Brontadon (Ship)

    21. Catwomans Catmobile22. Catwomans Catplane

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    23. Challenger SST

    24. Clockincopter

    25. Cluster Ship

    26. Cometeer

    27. Craddock Carriage28. Diib

    29. Doomsday Ship

    30. Eye of Zared

    31. Fiddlers Fiddle Car

    32. Flashs Cosmic Threadmill

    33. Flying Fish

    34. Flying Sundial

    35. Fokker Dr. I

    36. Gentlemans Horse

    37. Gibel Ship

    38. Golden Knight Flying Horse39. Gorandian Battle Tripod

    40. Gorandian Submarine

    41. Green Arrows Arrowcar

    42. Green Arrows Arrowplane

    43. Green Lantern Ring

    44. Grumman XF5F

    45. Gyrosub

    46. Haunted Tank

    47. Hawkmans Wings

    48. Hourmans Timeship

    49. Huntress Motorcycle

    50. Javelin-7

    51. Jokermobile

    52. Jonah Hexs Mechanical Horse

    53. JSAs Steel Eagle

    54. Justice League Cruiser

    55. Justice League Teleporter

    56. Kal-Els Rocketship

    57. Kanjar Ros Spaceship

    58. Lansarian Morphing Disk

    59. Legion Cruiser60. Legion Flight Rings

    61. Legion of Superheroes Flying Rings

    62. Legion of Superheroes Time Bubble

    63. Legion of Superheroes Time Cube

    64. Lobos Spacehog

    65. LX-811 Star Cruiser

    66. Mark 494 Star Cruiser

    67. Mitsu-Bishi

    68. Mobius Chair

    69. Multipurpose Intercept/Reconnaissance Vehicle

    70. Mustang Three71. Nautilus of Earth ABC

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    72. Newsboy Legions Whiz Wagon

    73. Omega Men Mothership

    74. Orions Astro-Harness

    75. Owlship

    76. P-40 Warhawk77. Pacos Convertible

    78. Panzer-Ship

    79. Peacemaker Hog

    80. Pilgrim One

    81. Quantum Jet

    82. Rip Hunters Timesphere

    83. Robins Redbird

    84. Royal Flush Gangs Flying Cards

    85. Sam

    86. Samsons Chronomobile

    87. Sandals of Hermes88. Scanner One

    89. Scarlet Skiers Cosmic Skis

    90. Scorpion-Ship

    91. Sea Witch

    92. Sheba

    93. Space Cab

    94. Space Shuttle Excalibur

    95. Star-Rocket Racer

    96. Starhunters Sunrider

    97. Steel Eagle

    98. Super-Cycle

    99. Supermans Phantom Zone Projector It transports you to another dimension!

    100. Supermobile

    101. Swinging through the rooftops Batman

    102. T-Jet

    103. T-Sub

    104. Teen Titans Helicopter

    105. Thangarian Star Cruiser

    106. Time Bubble

    107. Tricksters Air Shoes

    108. User: Bonesaw 19109. Vig-Cycle

    110. Vigilantes Motocycle

    111. Warehouse X Toys

    112. Warhound

    113. Warlords Plane

    114. Whirly-Bat

    115. Whiz Wagon

    116. Wildcats Motorcycle

    117. Wingcycle

    118. Wonder Womans Invisible Plane

    Some of the more famous objects of transportation are Adam Stranges Jetpack, the

  • 8/3/2019 DC vs Marvel Transportation


    Batmobile, Flashs Cosmic Threadmill, the Haunted Tank, Hawkmans Wings, Green

    Lanterns Ring, Kal-Els Rocketship, Legion of Superheroes Time Bubble, and Wonder

    Woman Invisible Plane. The top two of this list, the crme de la crme, are the Batmobile

    and Kal Els Rocketship. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery then the Batmobile has

    been praised again and again. The Arrowmobile, Catmobile, Jokermobile and to some extentthe Spider-Mobile, as parody, are all derived from the Batmobile. Kal-Els Rocketship refers

    to the space ship that delivered Superman to the planet Earth from Krypton. The Batmobile

    has been the subject of schematics from the beginning and you can buy toy collections of

    Batmobiles from the golden age to the present. Supermans rocket is a very different affair

    and the particulars of how the ship looks have varied tremendously from the golden age to the

    present. This is a contest between a very visually defined vehicle and an icon. The historic

    significance of Supermans rocket ship is more important than the Batmobile. The rocket

    ship is an integral part of the Superman mythos and that mythos in turn largely defined comic

    books from the beginnings to the present. On iconic grounds I would say Kal Els rocketship

    is the most important object of transportation in the DC universe and the coolest.

    Marvel Transportation

    Below is a list of objects of transportation in the DC universe.

    1. Asgardian Star Jammer

    2. Avengers Quinjet

    3. Big Wheel

    4. Dr. Dooms Time Machine

    5. Dr. Stranges Cloak of Levitation

    6. Fantastic Fours Fantasti-Car

    7. Fantastic Fours Pogo Plane

    8. Flying Horses Valyky, Black Knight

    9. Galactus Ship

    10. Ghost Riders Hell Cycle

    11. Green Goblins Glider

    12. Guardians of the Galaxy Freedoms Lady

    13. Hawkeyes Sky-cycle

    14. Iron Mans Armor

    15. Kangs Time-Ship

    16. Moon Knights Helicopter

    17. Nextwaves Shockwave Rider

    18. Quasars Quantum Bands19. Runaways Leapfrog

    20. S.H.I.E.L.D. Flying Car

    21. S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier

    22. Silver Surfers Board

    23. Spider-Mans Spider-Mobile

    24. Stiltmans Stilts

    25. Swinging through the rooftops Spiderman, Daredevil

    26. Thors Hammer Mjolnir

    27. X-Mens Blackbird

    Some of the most important objects of transportation in the Marvel universe includethe Fantasti-Car, Iron Mans Armor, the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier, Thors hammer and X-

  • 8/3/2019 DC vs Marvel Transportation


    Mens Blackbird. I have to mention the Spider-Mobile that is largely forgotten but was in

    Spider-Man during the seventies and was hilarious. The Spider-Mobile was a parody of

    consumerism. Spider-Man agreed to ride the Spider-Mobile for an ad agency. Spider-Man I

    just about always broke. The problem was the Spider-Mobile was constantly break having

    troubles. Webhead would have been better of sticking to his webbing and swinging throughthe roof tops.

    My Marvel favorites are the Fantasti-Car and Iron Mans armor. Both are marvels of comic

    book engineering. Schematics of both were provided early on and you could almost believe

    these machines could be created. They represent very different ideas of design. Iron Mans

    armor is a sleek, streamlined, minimalist machine that is a high tech, red and yellow, hot rod

    of the skies. If Iron Mans armor is a hot rod then the Fantasti-Car is a Volkswagen that is not

    streamlined but very practical. The Fantasti-Car has a modular design that looks goofy but

    allows the individual Fantastic Four members to break away from the main ship and fight

    more effectively as a group. Iron Man led to any number of armored imitators and again if

    imitation is the sincerest form of flattery then Iron Mans armor wins. However, does IronMans armor deserve to win in this sort of contest? Iron Mans armor is more weapon than

    transport. I think because of this the Fantasti-Car is the winner in the Marvel universe. The

    modular design of the Fantasti-Car might have real life applications.

    The Soviet Union often used tank riders instead of trucks for transportation during WW II.

    Men hung onto tanks for dear life. This was done due to a lack of trucks on the part of the

    Soviet Union. However, later many tactical advantages came out of this experience. The

    men could quickly jump from the tank and provide support to the tank and vice-versa in a

    way troops in trucks could not.

    I wonder if there is the possibility of some sort of helicopter rider system in which special

    forces could break away from a helicopter using some sort of individual pod rocket system

    attached to the outside of the helicopter allowing for greater speed in exiting than the current

    rappelling system used by special forces. You enter the external rocket pod using a door on

    the inside of the helicopter to provide maximum protection until the moment of exit. The

    rocket pod also allows quicker dispersal of special forces around an area and the pod also

    offers some extra protection upon exiting the protection of the helicopter.


    The winner of the DC competition is Supermans rocket ship. The winner of the Marvelcompetition is the Fantasti-Car. I love the sixties campiness of the Fantasti-Car but iconic

    value beats campiness and Supermans object wins as the coolest object of transportation!

    DC wins! In the course of this study something else stood out.

    What is very interesting when comparing the objects of transportation of DC with Marvel is

    that there is a giant difference in the number of such objects. This difference in numbers took

    me by surprise and is serendipitous result of this study. DC has 117 objects of transportation.

    Marvel has 27 objects of transportation. I have done my best to be exhaustive in the

    compilation of both lists but still may have missed an important object of transportation here

    and there but the difference in numbers is so great that one must come to the conclusion

    transportation, as reflected in the numbers above, is more important in the DC universe thanthe Marvel universe. I have my own after the fact theory about this.

  • 8/3/2019 DC vs Marvel Transportation


    I am old enough to have read comic books from the golden age to the present and let me

    assure younger readers that comic books have changed tremendously! The Marvel universe

    is a relatively new universe compared to DC whose superheroes and story line foundations

    were largely created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in the sixties. I would argue one basicdifference between Marvel and DC, especially in the sixties, was that Marvel focused a lot

    more on fights than the chase. For example, Superman spent way more time flying around

    looking for crooks than Thor. Thor quickly found his enemy and most of the issue focused

    on the fight. Thor fought characters like the Hulk. The Hulk does not flee from Thor thats

    for sure. I actually bought the first issue in which Thor and the Hulk fought solo and even

    then I knew this was something different. For one thing Jack Kirby and Stan Lee created all

    these fight scene cartoon blurb sounds that had no equivalent in the DC universe. Jack Kirby

    used a lot of lines showing shock waves than anyone else. The fight looked more real and the

    key to this was actually using exaggerated action that is less real but interestingly looks more

    real due to the nature of the medium. I am into martial arts and have at least fifty books in

    the area with pictures that show each move of a kata and the pictures look pretty boringcompared to a well done Jack Kirby punch or kick. I came to the conclusion that Marvel had

    better fight scenes and certainly longer fight scenes than DC. The difference in the quality

    and quantity of fight scenes between Marvel and DC has largely lessened over time.

    I mentioned Doomsday and Superman in the introduction and their fight as chronicled in the

    Death of Superman storyline was generally one giant multi-issue series of fight scenes. I hate

    to admit it but I enjoyed the series! Remind me to grow up one of these days. For the record,

    Superman didnt die despite the title of the series and I knew darn well Superman wouldnt

    die and was amazed how my friends and family bought the lie hook line and sinker! And also

    for the record, Captain America and Batman are not going to stay dead!

    The greater emphasis on fight scenes made Marvel more modern from their beginnings.

    Movies and TV were becoming more violent in the sixties and it made sense for comic books

    to go this route as well. Stan Lee and Jack Kirby were more attuned to modern media trends

    than their counterparts at DC at the time and this is one reason Marvel became such a success

    at the expense of DC. As a side note, I do not consider comic books overly violent at all

    compared to other media.

    Comic books have become more violent from the sixties to the present but are still much less

    violent than other media. I am especially amazed at some of the cutesy violent video games

    on Facebook that have tremendous appeal to my nieces and nephews who are in the six to tenyear old age group. I would much rather my nieces and nephews were reading the most

    violent DC or Marvel comic book out there than playing those horrible video games. I guess

    I am getting old because despite the best efforts of my nieces and nephews to explain the

    games, I had no interest.

    It is kind of Hello Kitty meets the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. You have these very cute

    cartoon characters wielding knifes or whatever and doing terrible things to other cute cartoon

    characters with blood and guts pouring out. I like my genres purer than that. I like Hello

    Kitty and I like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre but I really dont care for Hello Kitty acting

    like Leatherface, the bad guy in the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The games are very similar

    to Ren and Stimpy ofThe Simpsons fame but again are video games rather than a cartoonwithin a cartoon. I do think the interactive nature of a violent video game as opposed to a

  • 8/3/2019 DC vs Marvel Transportation


    violent cartoon on TV is worrisome. Back to the topic of this post!

    Another example of fight versus chase, many fifties Batman issues were reprinted in 80 page

    Giants in the sixties that I read when I was young and in many ways I grew up with this

    version of Batman. The fifties Batman is all about the chase! The Batman of the fiftiesinvariably ended up in some sort of scenario with giant objects. Batman chased and fought

    crooks in an almost surrealistic landscape. Batmite was introduced at this time and used his

    reality warping powers not to fight Batman but to make the chase more interesting. There is

    no M...